Then And Now

Conservationist Carl Jukes is picking a couple of buildings each week from old books and then adding some of his photos to show features/rooms that most people won’t have seen before!

No. 2 Midland Rd Railway Yard

Overview& history

Midland Road was named in the middle of the C19 after the Midland Railway (MR) established its base there, the proposed site was known as the “Midland Yard”.

Midland Railway operated between 1844 to 1922; it became the successor to the Oxford, Wolverhampton and Worcester Railway (OWWR). In 1860 it amalgamated with several other railway companies to become the West Midlands Railway, which in turn became amalgamated with the Great Western Railway GWR) in 1863.

Goods Shed

The goods shed consists of seven bays in red brick, with buff brick head details to windows, with limestone cills and siding doors (roller shutters fitted to front elevation), to rear and west gable, full height double wooden doors. Windows double diamond pattern of steel. Pediments below eaves have oculi above which is a double dentilled course of buff and blue brick. Blue canted brick, tops a red brick plinth. Single storey approximately 9 metres tall to ridge; some northern lights.

To the front elevation is a raised single storey structure, probably 1930-1940 in date, which now houses the heating system for the building.

Internally there are 6 cast iron columns running the length of the shed with a flange head which helps support 6 full width steel beams fixed into the front and rear wall of the shed. Unfortunately there are no makers marks on any of the columns or beams. The beams carry braced trusses of steel on to which are fixed roofing boards, unsure of roof covering.

The cellars are accessed externally down a flight of steps to the rear of the building, approximately 4 metres below ground floor. There are series of vaulted arches the full length of the building. There are two openings within the ground floor, which probably had cranes above them for lifting out and dropping in bonded goods. Cast iron down pipes run from the roof valleys into the cellar and below the cellar floor. There are a series of vents with iron railings fitted to them to double window width. There is a weighing table with a complete set of scales.  


Joined to the warehouse and possibly pre-dating the shed is the former Midland Railway offices of six bays in red brick with slate roof and single stack.Blue dentil course with a buff brick parapet and limestone copers on top. Blue canted brick on top of red brick plinth, matching the adjacent shed. The windows match those of the shed, only smaller in scale and constructed of timber, not steel. Original front door with overlight, original floorboards to entrance and a typical mid C19 stick baluster, curtailed staircase with handrail. It is possible that there is a cellar below, but this has yet to be verified.

Below is an e-mail about The Midland Railway Goods Station at Worcester from David Postle, archivist at Kidderminster Railway Museum: “This [The Shed] was authorised by the Midland Railway Additional Powers Act 1863 and was opened on 17 April 1868. It was closed on 28 February 1988. The Goods Shed would have been designed in the Architect’s Department at Derby during the period John Sanders was the company architect, and contains details such as windows and doors which were common to a lot of Midland Railway buildings of that period. Unfortunately, I can’t find any reference to the contractor who built it. It was wholly owned by the Midland Railway and not part of Worcester Joint Station (Midland Railway and Great Western Railway jointly ran Shrub Hill station), so the staff were Midland Railway employees and would have worn Midland Railway uniforms, and from 1923, LMS. It would have been used for loading and unloading general goods traffic carried largely by the Midland Railway itself, and almost certainly had internally hand-operated cranes”.

Midland Railway uniform circa 1902
Copyright The Science & Society Picture Library
Taken from Worcestershire in History
Alec Macdonald 1943 Press Alliances Ltd
Midland Yard railway sheds
Roof spans and trusses
Façade details to bay
Arched passageways to basement
Opening in ground floor to allow goods to be stored in the basement
Original weighing scales

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No. 1 The Shakespeare Café, 78 High Street, Worcester


Conservationist Carl Jukes is picking a couple of buildings each week from old books and then adding some of his photos to show features/rooms that most people won’t have seen before!

No. 1 The Shakespeare Café, 78 High Street, Worcester. This was also the pie shop that King George III and Queen Charlotte visited in 1788, bought and ate pies. The cook’s house still survives in Henwick Road today.

No. 1 The Shakespeare Café, 78 High Street, Worcester Read More »

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